JESSELL AT LARGE

WRC Fumbles Ball Letting Anchor Be Actor

The appearance of WRC Washington anchor Jim Handly delivering a breaking news report as part of the cold open of NBC’s The Blacklist post-Super Bowl broadcast did a disservice to him, his station, owner NBC and the viewers. Journalists should avoid putting themselves in any situation that would undermine their credibility. Pretending to be a TV reporter spouting words from a script is one such obvious situation. Local TV news still has a great reservoir of credibility, but it is not bottomless. Producers of that news should be careful not to dribble it away.